As Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff continues to decide whether to throw his state’s support behind an amicus brief opposing California’s violent videogame bill at the heart of Schwarzenegger vs EMA, Texas A&M International Associate Professor Christopher J Ferguson sent a letter to the editor of the Salt Lake Tribune urging Shurtleff to join the game industry’s side.
Ferguson, best known around these parts for his videogame research, outlined three reasons why Shurtleff should oppose the California bill:
First, there is no consistent research indicating that video games cause increased violence.
Second, as video games have become more popular and more violent in the past two decades, violent crimes among both youth and adults have gone down to their lowest levels since the 1960s.
Third, the current Entertainment Software Ratings Board video game ratings have been found to be very effective in informing parents about the content in video games their children may play.
Ferguson also noted that if the bill was given the go-ahead by the Supreme Court, it could increase crime in California:
It is ironic that the state would claim to champion the welfare of children by throwing money at a video game bill that will help no one, yet cut basic health, education and support services to countless children.
Cutting basic support to families runs the very real risk of increasing crime among the destitute.
Thanks PHX Corp!